Operation Fort Bridge is the official code name for Philip’s death. It refers to a bridge between Edinburgh and Perth. Each king has its own code name. For the Queen it was ‘Operation London Bridge’. When that code name is used, the staff inside the palace walls know what is going on and what to do.
In some cases, a warning had already been sent to the world before the king died. Of course, this only happens in the event of an expected death. News had already been sent to several British royals, including Queen Victoria and George V., while they were on their deathbed. In the case of Prince Philip, this was not the case.
View: Portrait of Prince Philip in pictures:
The work of the queen
After his death, the head of the royal family consulted with Prime Minister Boris Johnson. These options were then discussed with the Queen, after which she issued her official orders regarding mourning and burial. No action was taken thereafter until Philip’s death was made public by the palace. This was done in a traditional manner: a message was issued at the gates of Buckingham Palace. Also, a press release was issued.
National mourning period
Following that, a period of national mourning is declared, which lasts 8 days. This period applies to the entire United Kingdom: England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. During this period, except for the royal flag above Buckingham Palace, the country’s flags are half-open. It represents the whole monarchy, which will certainly continue after the death of Philip.
The ceremonial staff or scepter used in the British Parliament is covered with a black cloth or worn with a black bow. In addition, female MPs are required to wear black bracelets exactly 8.25 cm wide on their left hand. Male MPs wear black ties.
The Queen will not perform any official duties until the end of the mourning period. This means that no new laws will be approved at the moment. Finally, local authorities are being asked to “think very carefully” about whether or not to allow official matters to move forward. In principle, all ceremonies should be discontinued.
The body of Prince Philip will be laid to rest at St. James’ Palace, where Princess Diana was laid to rest several days after her death in 1997. This is done at the request of the prince. The royal family could say goodbye to him there, but the public was not expected to be able to offer final greetings.
Philip, the queen’s husband, was entitled to a state funeral with all kinds of bells and whistles, but could not find him for it. At his will, the prince said he wanted a casual funeral in a small circle. He wanted a military funeral in St. George’s Chapel, to be buried in Frogmore Garden, where Queen Victoria and Prince Albert are buried.
There will be a second mourning period after the funeral, which will last 30 days. Then the queen goes back to work.
Royals in black
State protocol dictates that from the exact moment the period of mourning is declared, members of the royal family and anyone who represents them should change into black clothing. In addition, they also wear a mourning band. That’s why travel royals never leave without a black dress and a mourning band in their suitcase. The black dress is usually worn until the end of the mourning period, which ends after the funeral. TV presenters should also wear black.
It is unknown at this time what he will do after leaving the post. Since he and his wife Megan left the state agency, they were not forced to wear black. Royalty viewers, however, think they will still make that choice as a sign of respect. Harry is also isolated in a situation where he has to move to the UK soon. He currently resides in California, but is expected to return soon to attend the funeral.